Locals in Towfiq, 240 km from Galkayo, are facing an acute water shortage after failure of both the Gu’ and Deyr seasonal rains.

Local resident, Shafi’i Ahmed Omar, who contacted Radio Ergo, said he lost 40 of his goats and was now left with only 20 animals. “It takes us four days to reach the nearest place where we can get water. But the water is salty and unclean and exposes the locals to the risk of diseases,” Shafi’i said.

Safia Mohamed Nur said some of her animals died on the way to the only water well 40 km away. She said many children had fallen sick with diarrhoea from drinking dirty water.

“I sent some of my people to fetch water from the well but they have not yet come back. I currently don’t have any water at home. I see here goats dying of thirst,” she said.

Speaking to Radio Ergo, Towfiq area commissioner, Mohamed Abdulkadir Ahmed, attributed the water crisis to insufficient rainfall. In this part of Mudug region people depend on harvested rain water. He warned that if the situation continued without intervention people could die of thirst.

“There is no nearby water well and the water pans have dried up. The animals are the most vulnerable now and they already started dying due to lack of water. The nearest well, which is hand-dug, cannot cover the needs of the people and livestock in the area and its level is very low. The water is dirty but people have to drink it,” the commissioner said.

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